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On Andys and Benders
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Heartiste recently pointed to Bender from The Breakfast Club as “possibly the most iconic charismatic alpha male jerkboy in pre-post-America movie history”. Judd Nelson’s character is more than just an onscreen embodiment of jerkboy characteristics, he also serves as a great illustration of why so many traditionalists are antagonistic towards the concept, and more importantly the celebration of the application, of Game. Parenthetically, I use the term “traditionalist” here to broadly define those who have some level of antipathy towards the reigning ideology of egalitarianism and its offshoots of feminism, cultural Marxism, etc.

Bender is only an alpha when it comes to getting girls*. When he comes into conflict with Andy, a leader-of-men alpha male, he gets put in his place in a heartbeat:

The dissembling and self-puffery get sliced through like a hot knife slicing through butter. Strength, courage, honor, and mastery don’t lend themselves well to fakery. They are there or they are not. This is how the pecking order is ‘supposed’ to be established, and for most of human history (and in much of the present, non-WEIRDO world) this is how it was (and is) established.

Game introduces a relatively new dynamic, and, somewhat paradoxically given how hostile its proponents are to modern feminism, it functions best in a feminized world. In the feminized, culturally Marxist modern West, it is increasingly difficult for Andy to put Bender in his place without landing an assault charge and a mandatory meeting with a representative from HR.

In the long run Claire would be better off with Andy than she would be with Bender. Life wouldn’t be as thrilling, but she and her kids would have stability, material comfort, social respectability, and all the other markings of success in a civilized society. As a young woman discovering the potency of her budding sexual desirability, she’s not in an ideal position to realize that. There is a reason that through most of human history young women had only a modest influence in determining who their mates would be.

Fortunately for those of a traditionalist bent, modern contraceptives are a sort of saving grace that will keep Claire and other women like her (with plenty of exceptions of course, especially among members of the lower classes) from spawning with the Benders of the world. Instead, she’ll masturbate with street urchins through her late teens and twenties before settling in (and for) someone like Andy.

It’s an open question as to how stable this state of affairs will remain. At the point in time when Andy decides to stop holding up the pillars of civilization and just walk away, the whole civilizational edifice will come crumbling down behind him.

* The alpha-beta dichotomy and its subsequent inversion creates a couple of alliterations that are just too cute to be intentional: Alpha Andy and Beta Bender!

(Republished from The Audacious Epigone by permission of author or representative)
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  1. And Brian is the guy in the gorilla suit!

    Henry Harpending posted something along these lines today, too, although not in the context of The Breakfast Club.

  2. Anonymous [AKA "fast break the club"] says:

    TBC is an overrated. It's a film for melodramatic teenagers and impudent critics with absolutely no idea of what's it like to be a teenager. Because clearly it all comes to down generations and generations pass from one era to the next era. In the end, this film has a very abused message with foul mouthed stereotypical teenagers who have few similarities to reality and a director who lives under a rock. The breakfast club is possibly the worst teenage film ever, john Hughes worst film of all time, and one of the worst movies I have ever seen in my young life.

  3. Interesting post, but, while the Andys of the world protect the Claires and Allisons from the Benders, the real pillars of civilization are the Brians. They are the ones that build a civilization worth protecting. A world full of Andys would consist of honorable barbarians. The Brians gave us modernity.

  4. BTL,

    Good point. The still frame captures the inversion of that, with Brian, mouth agape, staring in wonder at Andy and Bender.

  5. Dan says:

    "At the point in time when Andy decides to stop holding up the pillars of civilization and just walk away, the whole civilizational edifice will come crumbling down behind him."

    Unless Andy believes in reincarnation, this is hardly a strategy for him. Andy only gets dealt one hand to play. Its not like Andy can throw a fit and get a new hand dealt to him.

    I work hard to bring civilization into my universe. I get some comfort in achieving a higher level. Civilized, intelligent people are minor aristocrats in our brave new world.

  6. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:


    While allowing for some measure of variance, you are not necessarily correct. The simple fact is that the Brian's of the world are too weak to create it. They function within, and maybe enhance, the edifice created by strong men. It takes intelligence, courage, commitment and masculinity to create a strong and stable society. The Brian's are missing courage and masculinity. They are easily bowed and lack the vigor to compete with other humans in a raw setting, and the truth is that we are always at war with those who would tear everything down. For the creators of society, look to intelligent men who are also strong of the mind and body, the George Washington's, if you will.

  7. BTL,

    Isn't modernity the problem, per the traditionalists?

  8. @ Anonymous 10:08 –

    He's a nerd, so technological modernity.

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